Month: April 2016

The uniqueness of the advice merchants

Professionals in fields like dating advice work to differentiate themselves, for marketing purposes. If what you sell is rare and unique, you can sell it at a high price compared to commodity goods.

So, as expected, we see speakers, writers and coaches who heavily emphasise the uniqueness of the approach. They bring attention to the differentiating qualities of their teaching compared to that of others in the same field.

This approach stands in sharp contrast to that of the academics, and those of religious traditions. Those communities of thinkers strive to connect their work to that of their peers and antecedents. They tend to emphasise the fact that their work stands within a larger tradition.

Some level of free-thinking, maverick-like behaviour is allowed. If these qualities are somewhat stifled in traditional arenas, it’s good that they have a place to flourish in the commercial world.

But the shrewd marketing approach may lead a teacher of genuinely valuable advice to miss the opportunity to enhance his students’ understanding by exploring connected ideas from outside the packaged info he’s selling. That would be a shame.

It could also be a way of preventing confusion by keeping things focussed.

The more curious students can go explore the wider context on their own initiative, of course. Amateurs, like me, can publish our attempts to collate ideas from various sources.

Mind tricks

The upshot of this post is: quick seduction tricks, ‘hacks’, or tricks are praxeologically unsustainable. They aren’t worthwhile. Let’s build real value, virtue, and character instead.

A man makes a discovery in his dating life. He observes that performing a certain novel action seems unexpectedly attractive to women. He tells his friends, and they copy his unintuitive technique, and find it effective. The information spreads out across the wider peer group, slowly…

Or quickly. Especially if one of the guys is a professional in the dating or seduction advice field. Or someone with enough followers on Twitter.

This new knowledge changes behaviour. It can’t remain an effective technique forever. Because the context has changed. The initial context was one in which this weird new trick was new. It was a novel humourous chat-up line, or reasonable-sounding excuse for two strangers to touch, or an action that expresses a mysterious demeanour.

Now, every other dude knows it. The girls have seen it a dozen times, in many tiresome re-enactments. If it was a joke, it’s not funny any more. If it was a playful suggestive invitation, repetition has killed whatever nuance it had. Now it’s understood as a vulgar proposition.

So to be effective with pick-up mind tricks, you’ll need to be ahead of the curve. You need to be informed of new techniques quickly. Better subscribe to the masters on YouTube or wherever, and listen to all the podcasts.

But the lightspeed dissemination of techniques over the ‘net is precisely what’s accelerating the shortening of their useful lifespan.

It’s more than just individual techniques that are harmed. As PUA-like practitioners increase in number, whole classes of techniques are diminished. It’s not just that some particular jokes get old. Women getting hit on learn that joke-telling is a much weaker indicator that a guy is genuinely funny. They learn that a situational display that seems to convey social courage doesn’t really give hard evidence that the man has genuine confidence.

The genuinely funny guy has to work a bit harder to impress the lady. But that’s fine, he’s up to the challenge. Same with the man of genuine confidence.

So we’d better forget the tricks. Don’t be taken in by the shortcut merchants. Accept the uncomfortable fact that real hard work is needed. Genuine value-building oriented advice is out there.

Roosh, often mistaken for a PUA, said There Is No Shortcut To Getting Laid.

But is there even a little but of value in tricks? Maybe. As a stepping stone into a conversation? As a knowingly corny joke? Seems this is the point where theory stops and practice begins.

A man’s needs

Let us dig a hole, and bury a crappy concept.

Men need sex? O RLY? No, man, being horny won’t kill you.

But we can speak meaningfully of needs that aren’t life-essential, like food or drink. We can argue that sex is a necessary part of a properly fulfilling life. Not needed to merely survive, but needed to thrive.

I still object.

My issue is particularly in the term ‘need’. The everyday usage of it doesn’t specify what the need is for, but there’s always a for.

The term is ethically loaded. It expresses some desire but also comes with an insinuation of obligation.

Take a relationship therapist who raises the topic of the boyfriend’s sexual needs. There’s an implication that the girlfriend is failing in her obligations regarding relief of his sexual frustrations. This is an awful way to think about sex.

To misquote revelation: there is no obligation in sex.

If good sex is conceived of as free action, entered into out of love and genuine mutual desire, then it can’t be thought of as a need. It’s a desire.

But what if the world was convinced of the proposition ‘men need sex’, and genuinely believed in the moral dimension that I’ve claimed it contains? Wouldn’t this be of great benefit to men? Easy pussy for everyone! Shouldn’t I be all for that, as a self-proclaimed masculinist?

At this point, the profound absurdity and profanity of the whole notion should be clear.

But if it isn’t…

Masculinism isn’t about making everything easy for men.

I think there’s an argument to be made from the reality that valuable achievements are genuinely difficult, requiring effort and discipline, towards a metaphysical justification for the basis of masculinity as such… but I don’t have enough information to articulate such a thesis. So I’ll just throw this part-formed jumble of concepts out there.

Begging for sex is, clearly, unmasculine. Who aspires to receive a pity fuck?

This is a great song

Tinder and male sexual entitlement

Men on Tinder think they have a “licence to use women as they see fit” if their date’s appearance is less attractive than her profile photograph, research says.

Dr Jenny van Hooff, senior lecturer in sociology at Manchester Metropolitan University, carried out a study of the use of Tinder among men in Manchester and Cheshire.

From PsyPost, Some Men on Tinder think they have a ‘license to use unattractive women as they see fit’

This article discusses sociological research involving interviews with men who use Tinder. These interviews reveal, according to the received interpretation, attitudes of sexual entitlement when meetings with women who have, in their judgement, tricked them with a deceptively attractive profile.

I found this article via my YouTube subscriptions: Deceived Males Shamed (video) by Bernard Chapin.

A 29-year-old man told her: “I’ve been very misled by very selective pictures, angles when the person isn’t as attractive or as slim or sporty as they make out on pictures. I try to swerve if possible, or get something out of it.”

The writeup doesn’t explicitly advocate a particular ethical or political position. Maybe the researcher does, in her own writing or presentation. I don’t know. But from the article, I get the sense that the respondents’ quoted statements are viewed as problematic. There is no outright suggestion, in the article, that these men are dangerous, abusers, or criminals. But there’s this insinuation…

The field of sociology has a lot of feminist influence. And feminism has a big problem with the notion of male sexual ‘entitlement’. It’s seen as strongly connected with selfish disregard for the interests of women, particularly around the need for sexual consent. So this is understood as a precursor for rape, and condemned as dangerous.

Here’s a different perspective, admittedly an amateur one. My view as a masculinist and sex realist.

We’re looking at confidence, self-esteem, even cockiness. And these attributes are perfectly compatible with a healthy concern for consent (i.e. that it’s an absolute necessity for sex). And they are conventionally understood as making a guy more attractive.

So no wonder some of these Tinder dudes, meeting up with women who aren’t as attractive as advertised, are getting laid. The guys are less intimidated by them. They’re emboldened to act with more courage and forthrightness, and the women like that, evidently, cause they’re having sex.

Sexual ‘entitlement’ is an ideologically loaded notion which too easily equivocates harmful attitudes and potentially positive male characteristics.

None of the above should be taken as an endorsement of casual sex. On that topic, I’ll just reference Doc Love now.